It's official. I have lost 4 inches off my waistline since last August. I now wear 38's. 38x30. Yes. I have short legs.
I did it through a combination of exercise (read: bike riding) and portion control - with the elimination of most sweets.
I found that it's important to balance the exercise and portion control - if one component or the other goes missing for a while, it's easy to lose the gains one makes against weight. It needs to be both.
Not in the extreme, mind you. But.
Being a Type II Diabetic means I keep track of my blood sugar, and over time I have learned what foods do what to my sugar levels - and I avoid those situations. And those foods. And a natural byproduct of monitoring levels and keeping them in line is, if not the loss of weight, then the stabilization of weight.
The other idea in all of this is to lose the weight slowly - you put it on, slowly, you should take it off the same way. If you lose too much too quickly, you take a chance on oscillating up and down - which is not good for your body - and not good for your mind either. It becomes easy to lose your enthusiasm for what you're doing, instead of the weight.
Don't lose your enthusiasm. Lose the weight.